2011-05-12 GnuCash IRC logs

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13:24:52 <nishmu> When two people use a single bank account (by using thier own debit cards for that account), and also maintain their own GnuCash files, how can the withdrawals by the other person be tracked, so that reconcilation process goes smoothly?
13:32:07 <nishmu> I guess it's straight forward task of getting the bank's statement and dumping the other persons withdrawals into a new account, before doing reconciliation of our own accounts.
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13:41:17 <warlord> If you're sharing an account like that,why do you have two different gnucash files?
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14:01:18 <nishmu> Well, that thought never occured, since one was using GnuCash already and the other person started to track her own expenses on a new file with only the bank account being common.
14:01:40 <nishmu> I guess the multi-level account heirarchy should help track the expenses separately, but at the expense of secrecy of thier own accounts let open to the other. But that shouldn't matter much, when they can agree to share a bank account.
15:06:39 <kimmo> nishmu, I simply check online banking and put all my wife's transactions into "Random crap"
15:08:07 * Simon makes note to either never have a joint bank account or find someone uninterested in keeping track of their bank accounts
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15:09:49 <kimmo> that account is not really that important. We just have a joint account that we use for groceries and other small crap
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16:21:15 <arbortender> hi
16:21:51 <arbortender> first time on irc so please be patient as I get up to speed
16:22:50 <arbortender> I am using Gnucash & having trouble understanding the drill-down function through a report, say a P&L, to the transactions summarized at each item.
16:24:42 <arbortender> Certain links in the report lead to an empty register, though there is a figure shown in the report. Others, to a register that contains transactions, but whose total does not match that shown in the report. What am I doing wrong? Some switches unset in the accounts/subaccounts themselves?
16:26:08 <warlord> It doesn't show the transactions that comprise the report -- it just jumps the register for that account.
16:26:17 <warlord> As for the 0-- perhaps it's a placeholder account?
16:27:14 <arbortender> Should not the register it jumps to contain the transactions that sum up to the amount shown?
16:31:46 <warlord> Not necessarily... the report could only be showing a subset of the transactions (due to report date settings)
16:32:25 <warlord> For example, the report could only be showing you transactions from, say, Mar 1 - Mar 31,but the account could show you everytihng from Jan 1 - May 12
16:32:50 <arbortender> Right, I get that, and I have specified a particular date range to run the report. Also,Actually, I am looking at a report entitled 'Income Statement'. Not sure if that makes a difference.
16:33:06 <arbortender> Here's an example of what I am trying to understand.
16:33:06 <arbortender> :
16:35:14 <arbortender> So there's a Postage & Delivery expense account, showing 165.75 on the report. I drill down on the link, and it goes to the register for P&D, which happens to only have those very expenses & which totals the same. Fine. (for that reason, not a good example of the fact that I get what you are clearly saying above, but I do get that). Now.
16:38:27 <arbortender> There's also a Utilities expense account (both Utilities & P&D are subaccounts of Teak, a business expense designation). The Utilities expense account on the report shows a total of $4478.76. When I click the Utilities link on that line in the report, it goes to an empty register.
16:39:56 <arbortender> Should that register not contain SOME transactions? Perhaps more than shown on the report, but at the very least, include all of the transactions totalled in the report? If not, where do I find the transactions that comprise the total? Tell me if that's not clear.
16:44:29 <kpreid> arbortender: placeholder accounts don't contain the transactions
16:44:43 <kpreid> you have to look at the register of the individual accounts, or a detailed report on both
16:44:57 <kpreid> the *only* things placeholder accounts do are sums of balances (afaik)
16:46:24 <arbortender> So, am I understanding that in the example I gave for utilitities, above, that the utilities account is a placeholder?
16:47:15 <warlord> arbortender: yes.
16:47:21 <warlord> (most likely)
16:47:57 <arbortender> and that the income statement is taking its total from that placeholder?
16:48:18 <warlord> no,it's computing it from the subaccounts
16:48:41 <arbortender> from the subaccounts of the placeholder?
16:49:29 <warlord> yes
16:51:01 <arbortender> Maybe I just need to see a different report, then. What is the proper report to run, if I want to see the breakdown there, by subaccount, with the subaccounts linked for drilldown, for the period requested?
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16:52:24 <warlord> arbortender: from the income statement, go to report options and then change the account depth
16:56:06 <arbortender> okay, I'm checking that out.
17:09:07 <arbortender> OK, I see where that improved the report & accessibility to the accounts, but now I think I have confused myself in the setup of the accounts. It's not clear to me what the purpose of the placeholder is, but here is what I would like to see happening with my accounts: Say there is an expense account for Fuel. Say there are 4 subaccounts for fuel, to track Fuel-Generator, Fuel-Propane, Fuel-Toyota, & Fuel-Diesel. I expect to find
17:09:51 <arbortender> In the cases where the parent account instead says 0, are those, then, accounts which I have incorrectly set up as Placeholders?
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17:11:56 <arbortender> Also, using that Fuel example, sometimes I might not be clear WHICH fuel was purchased, and so would stick in in just Fuel, not sub-categorized, and I would expect the sum of those expenses to be included along with the sums of the subaccounts, in a report that identified the total cost of fuel for a given period.
17:11:58 <warlord> No, you may just not have spent anything..
17:12:11 <arbortender> no, that's not it.
17:12:32 <warlord> A placeholder is exactly what you think -- it's an umbrella category that "holds" a bunch of "real" categories
17:13:16 <warlord> Well, in that case you just have a regular account with sub-accounts; it's not a "placeholder". A placeholder account *cannot* hold transactions (GnUCash wont let you add them)
17:13:52 <warlord> But you can have a non-placeholder that's just a parent of a bunch of sub-categories. Although generally it would be better to make a Fuel:Uncategorized subaccount .
17:14:08 <warlord> .. and then make Fuel a placeholder... to prevent accidental mistakes.
17:15:40 <arbortender> Aha! Fuel: Uncategorized good idea. Can an account that is presently designated as 'Placeholder' be simply switched to 'not one'?
17:16:21 <warlord> Sure. from the Account List select the account and then click "Edit" -- and uncheck the "placeholder" checkmark
17:16:38 <warlord> Similarly to make an account a placeholder, check that box.
17:17:04 <arbortender> & that action would then leave Fuel as a non-placeholder account, which would sum the totals of the transactions in its subaccounts?
17:17:15 <arbortender> (the first action)
17:17:56 <warlord> No.
17:18:03 <warlord> It would allow you to enter transactions into it
17:18:30 <arbortender> ok, but would NOT sum the totals of the subaccounts too?
17:18:34 <warlord> The report will always sum subaccounts into parent accounts (unless you set the option, in some reports, not to)
17:19:11 <warlord> I.e., "Fuel" will always report the total of "Fuel + all Subaccounts"
17:20:43 <arbortender> OK clear. I THINK that is what I want, as well as another subaccount for Fuel:Uncategorized...Is there some good reason that I am overlooking, that I might want to use a placeholder account as the parent instead?
17:20:51 <warlord> I think you're confusing yourself because reports combine things that dont exist in the Chart of Accounts.
17:21:16 <warlord> You *almost ALWAYS* want to use a placeholder as a parent account.
17:21:29 <warlord> ... it prevents you from accidentally putting transactions into it.
17:21:32 <arbortender> I AM! Always! If there's a simple way to do things...I wish I might find my way over there sooner, always!
17:21:49 <warlord> All "placeholder" does is make the account itself read-only, so you can't put transactions into it.
17:21:58 <warlord> And generally you almost always want that behavior.
17:22:50 <arbortender> OK, but it (the placeholder account) still behaves the same otherwise, on reports, in that it sums the totals of its subs?
17:23:22 <warlord> Dont think of it as the account doing that -- think of it as the report reporting the sum of all children accounts.
17:25:09 <arbortender> OK, I think I get it. I have a significant amount of recategorizing to do, to rethink that. Thank you for your persistence.
17:25:58 <warlord> You're welcome! Happy GnuCashing
17:26:52 <arbortender> Indeed! I can hardly wait to catch up so I can fly the mobile version on my phone. I should probably have a few questions on that, too, I imagine.
17:27:04 <arbortender> Cheers!
17:28:12 <warlord> Mobile version?
17:28:21 <arbortender> YES!
17:28:32 <warlord> Of ...? I know of no "mobile Gnucash"
17:28:44 <arbortender> I haven't installed it yet, but yes there is!
17:29:07 <warlord> Ummm..... Maybe it's someone re-using the name, but it's certainly not related to us. What phone?
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17:34:50 <arbortender> It certainly is. Publisher: PortableApps.com (Shawn Faucher) and the GnuCash Team. Its part of the PortableApps suite, available at http://portableapps.com/. Check it out: http://portableapps.com/apps/office/gnucash_portable
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17:36:08 <arbortender> I am using an HTC TouchProII, to answer your question.
17:38:23 <kpreid> which runs Windows Mobile, I see
17:39:00 <warlord> Actually, PortableApps is their own project; it's certainly based on our code, but... it's not us.
17:39:26 <warlord> But WindowsMobile -- that does answer it. Thanks.
17:40:22 <arbortender> yes. Though I would prefer to upgrade to an Android phone, my service provider does not offer one with the capabilities of this particular Windows phone...Yet. & I believe that PortableApps does an android implementation also.
17:40:23 <kpreid> er, portableapps doesn't port to mobile OSes
17:40:57 <arbortender> I don't know what that statement means, exactly.
17:41:18 <kpreid> "portable apps" and, afaik, portableapps.com are about apps you can run without installation from removable media
17:41:22 <kpreid> nothing to do with phones
17:43:24 <arbortender> Hmm. Well, maybe I am misunderstanding, but I am understanding that this will happily install on my Windows phone.
17:44:57 <jsled> what leads you to believe that?
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17:48:35 <arbortender> Well, what I read on the sourceforge offering, of course. I have no special knowledge of it, only what I read...I guess that I will burn that bridge when I get to it. Rather than digging any deeper & discovering a disappointment at this moment, for now, I need to catch up on my regular bookkeeping right here at my laptop @ home, with the plain 'ol jane I have...standard GnuCash & this big box of sorted receipts. I surely hope I
17:53:03 <kpreid> arbortender: your message was cut off at "I surely hope I". IRC has a line length limit.
17:53:54 <arbortender> Aha. OK, here's the rest: I surely hope I did understand correctly, because that would relieve a lot of backlog & keep it that way, if this program could be easily used at the point of the transactions' happening, mobile phone in hand.
17:54:33 <jsled> it can't
17:54:37 <jsled> there's no mobile version.
17:54:56 <jsled> the "portable" version doesn't run on winmo, to my knowledge.
17:55:01 <mishehu> aw no android version yet? :-)
17:55:16 <kpreid> all of these would require total UI rewrites
17:55:19 <mishehu> that'd be a pain though, running accouting software on a little screen like that
17:55:22 <kpreid> such activity would surely be noticed
17:56:15 <jsled> mishehu: would need a different ui and user interaction patterns, certainly
17:56:24 <mishehu> I was just kidding
17:56:30 <jsled> ah.
17:56:44 <mishehu> I wouldn't want to use it on my HTV EVO
17:56:48 <mishehu> too cumbersome
17:56:52 <arbortender> I would find it extremely useful and my screen is not small.
17:57:21 <warlord> mishehu: definitely no android version
17:57:27 <mishehu> it'd probably help if gnucash wasn't still so dependent on gnome
17:57:58 <kpreid> arbortender: do you want to record transactions? perhaps see if there's a mobile app which will let you do that and generate QIF or OFX files
17:58:02 <mishehu> warlord: what about a version written by android slaves?
17:58:31 <jsled> mishehu: was that announced at Google I/O already?
17:58:33 <jsled> :)
17:59:01 <arbortender> kpried...sounds like that's a reasonable approach..I will poke around..AFTER I get caught up here. Now tell me to get back to work, please!
17:59:11 <kpreid> arbortender: get back to work
17:59:17 <arbortender> bye
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23:41:18 <awayand> hi there, I have this issue that is driving me up the walls
23:41:34 <awayand> I am using gnucash for win, latest version with strawberry, latest version
23:41:46 <awayand> cannot get this automatic quote updater installed
23:42:27 <awayand> here is the error output after launching the script. Any ideas? http://pastebin.com/t7zyENQf
23:43:59 <awayand> I have considered killing my goldfish over this issue, why the heck is it so hard to get this thing installed? Can't this thing just be bundled? I have tried this years ago without success I had hoped things have changed by now. So, so, soooo frustrating... grrrr
23:56:14 <awayand> basically the script tells me I have the up to date version of Finance::Quotes installed and then it tells me it is missing and I have to install Finance::Quotes
23:56:29 <awayand> anyway, I will restart now, see what happens
23:56:31 <awayand> brb
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